Waiting and Dreaming

If you’ve been reading this website for more than few months, you’ll have watched as Storyknife sprung from the dirt. In fact we’re a little more than two weeks away from May 4th, the one-year anniversary of the groundbreaking at Storyknife.

Quilt by Alice Krivitsky in Katie Cabin

In one year, what was a dream and a set of building plans has become a women writers residency – six completed cabins and the main house. Built, finished, furnished, and now decorated. All along the way, the Storyknife community has helped out, by cheering us on, by donating needed operational funding, by purchasing from gift lists, and by donating time and talent to the dream. The plan was to get the place built in one year and women in residence by now; in fact, we thought we’d do it in eleven months with our first residency session in April. But even though our contractor Scott Bauer and his amazing crew came through, the world had something else in store for all of us.

Quilt by Karrie Youngblood in Peggy Cabin

So, Storyknife waits and dreams. Maura plans meals and shopping trips. I get linens ready, oversee the installation of the wifi, write development plans and emergency plans and operational plans. Patrice Krant and her husband Rick Rosenbloom hang the wall quilts in each cabin. Snow melts and the gardens get ready to green up.

This week, even though there is still a little snow on the deck and yard, I put together a deck chair. It was about 1pm when I finished, and I sat myself down and looked out. I tried to imagine that I had just finished my lunch and was preparing to go back to my cabin to spend the afternoon finishing my manuscript. There were varied thrushes down the hill calling to one another and meltwater dripping from the deck boards.

Quilt by Patrice Krant in Evangeline Cabin

Here at Storyknife we’ve made several difficult decisions – the most heartbreaking has been to postpone the April-June residencies. Those writers will be given the opportunity to reserve a spot in next year’s residency schedule. To a one, they’ve all be understanding. Disappointed, but understanding and affirming. For Dana and I, it’s been disappointing to see the dream wait, BUT it has been critically important to do what’s best for the writers of Storyknife and our community. We must all stay safe. We must stay united in keeping physical distancing procedures in place in order to protect the most vulnerable people. We believe that every story is important, and so we want to shelter everyone.

Quilt by Peggy Parsons in Diana Cabin

I truly hope that this finds you and your family and friends safe and well. One of the parts of Storyknife that neither Dana nor I could have ever predicted is the generous and amazing community that has formed around it. We’re grateful for all of you and so please stay safe. We’ll be here for women writers when these troubles pass, and we want all of you to be here, too.

Take care,
Erin Hollowell
Storyknife Executive Director

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Quilt by Shirley Svoboda in Betty Cabin
Quilt by Piama Svoboda in Carol Cabin

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